Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dining at the Eagle Tavern and other Areas at Greenfield Village

The following post was written by Nicole from Dining in Detroit, a blog dedicated to...well...the fine food one can find in the Detroit area. She has done a wonderful job in writing about a subject one rarely thinks about when visiting Greenfield Village: eating!

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The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village is a phenomenal collection of local historical artifacts, a treasure trove of Detroit's automotive history (and by extension, America's industrial history), as well as an elaborate piece of preserved Americana: "American's Greatest History Attraction." But did you know that the food service program in both the Museum and the Village (including the Village's full-service restaurant, Eagle Tavern) is one of the most passionately and progressively locally-sourced menus in metro Detroit?

'Tis true. When Director of Food Services and Catering Jesse Eisenhuth took over the operations just a few short months ago, he saw that there was already quite a bit being sourced locally, but there was opportunity for so much more. "We try to do as much as we possibly can," he says. "Our ice cream comes from Melting Moments in Lansing. We use Guernsey [from Northville] milk. Even our bottled water is from Absopure [based in Plymouth]. I've been looking at every single item we use here to see if there's some way we can use a product made locally instead."

For him it's not just about supporting the local economy - it's about staying true to the educational component and historical accuracy that Greenfield Village strives for. Simply put, in the mid-1800s (the era in which the Village is set) food and beverage products would have been made locally utilizing produce and livestock grown and raised on nearby farms that would change with the seasons. Sustainability is not just about good business sense and being ecologically-conscious; it's a matter of authenticity.

This new practice being implemented across the board by Eisenhuth even extends to the beverages. "We're historically accurate with everything else here; why not drinks?" he points out. In that spirit, they carry a selection of "Spiritous Liquors" in the Eagle Tavern and bar from Michigan's New Holland Distillery, which include whiskey, gin, two kinds of rum, and a "Michigan grain spirit" (called such because "vodka" would have been unknown at this time, except maybe as moonshine). New Holland's spirits were also chosen because the labels have a look more suited to the 1850 era (versus something like the cheeky 1920s-era pin-up girl on the Valentine Vodka label, superior though the product may be). Beers (called "malt beverages" on the menu) are custom-made from Detroit's Motor City Brewing Works with labels exclusive to the Henry Ford, and are bottled in such a way as to appear more era-appropriate (though bottled beer would not have existed back then). "With everything we do we consider 'how can we position this properly to have it here?' We're not going to the extreme of carrying Bud Light. We're still keeping our look and feeling [with these beers]."

The cocktails are another example of this practice. Classic cocktails are prepared in classic ways, like the Mint Julep which is really a simple preparation of simple syrup, muddled mint and bourbon or brandy. "It's also part of the educational process, which is part of our identity here," Eisenhuth explains. "We can make the drink however someone wants it - with more syrup or with rum instead - but how we make them here is historically accurate." The drink recipes have been changed to be more local and era-appropriate; for the Mint Julep, the Greenfield Village Herb Associates grow their own mint that is used in the drink. They make their own simple syrup (as they would have done in 1850), as well as their own aromatic bitters using a recipe from the Jerry Thomas Bartenders Guide published in 1862. "The drinks wouldn't have been fancy back then," Eisenhuth notes. "They would have only had two or three ingredients just to mask the flavor of the alcohol." (Hence the use of bitters, which do that job rather well. And let that serve as a warning to you.) If you still question their commitment to the authenticity here, then know this: currently they are planting Orange Pippin trees, which is a specific kind of apple, in the Village so that in time they can make the historic bitters recipe really as it was made.

One more time: they're growing apple trees in order to make more historically accurate bitters. Lots of bars are making their own bitters nowadays, but how many can claim that?

Drinks are also served with a macaroni straw. Why? Because plastic hadn't been invented yet (though a metal straw would have been more common then). "You can taste history here," says Eisenhuth. "There's something here for everyone, including the adult kid."

Granted this level of detail is impossible to carry out to absolute authenticity, or there would be a whole lot of things unavailable to visitors which would make for a whole lot of unhappy customers (if you've ever tried to get between me and my morning coffee, amplify that by dozens of caffeine-deprived middle-aged mothers wrangling hundreds of screaming children EVERY SINGLE DAY), but in those cases there is still a concentrated effort at carrying local products so long as they are cost-effective. Most products that the Henry Ford carries are from within 150 miles of the museum (and are mostly from Michigan though occasionally do extend into northern Ohio); most places are considered to be "local" if they stay within 200 miles.

In addition to sourcing locally, the Henry Ford is also committed to sustainability in greening initiatives as well.

Compostable products are from Michigan Greensafe Products in Detroit (including "plastic" drinking cups made from corn). They bale and recycle their own cardboard. They use filtafry to filter and recycle all of their fryer oil and have started to recycle paper, plastic bottles and cans. Even down to their condiments they show an eco-conscious sensibility, carrying ketchup and mustard in large pump containers with biodegradable condiment cups instead of the ecologically disastrous plastic packets. And once again, this environmental awareness is dual-purpose: in 1850 recycling went without saying, so much so that it didn't need its own name, and there was no such thing as non-biodegradable.

It just goes to show that everything old is made new again. As eco-consciousness, sustainability, sourcing locally, even classic craft cocktailing have become the hottest "new" trends in food, fashion and industry, what's really happening is that society's mindset is shifting away from Bigger Faster Stronger to Smaller Older Slower, rejecting the incessant expansion brought about by industrialization and embracing the idea of a "simpler time," so far removed from our current culture that it seems foreign and exotic. By getting back to the idea of having a small community in which you know your farmer and who makes your artisanal products like breads and cheeses, where you grow your own herbs and can your own fruits and create your own compost pile of biodegradable materials to supply nutrients to the soil in which you'll grown your own garden, we haven't stumbled across a new concept - we've rediscovered a very, very old one.

It seems only fitting then that a place like the Henry Ford would take the concept very seriously.

From the restaurants to the cafeterias to the food stands, the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village offer the most local, sustainable, and historically accurate dining experience you're likely to find pretty much anywhere for a historical attraction of this magnitude, or even just as far as your everyday restaurant is concerned. Eagle Tavern and A Taste of History Restaurant are open daily 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. through October 15, or whenever Greenfield Village is open.

If you're interested in learning more about the places that the Henry Ford sources their products, here is a list of just some of their providers:


Fresh-ground pork - Ernst Farm, Ann Arbor , MI
Chicken breasts and products - Eat Local, Eat Natural, Ann Arbor , MI and KBD Detroit , MI
Hot dogs and brats - Dearborn Sausage Co., Dearborn, MI
Milk pints and dipping ice cream, Guernsey Farms Dairy, Northville, MI
Custard is - CF Burger, Detroit, MI
Ice cream novelties (cookie sandwiches and moment bars) - Melting Moments, Lansing , MI
Bottled water - Absopure, Plymouth , MI
Pies - Achatz Handmade Pie Co., Chesterfield Township , MI (some pies also made from scratch in-house)
Early Joe cider and vinegar products - Almar Orchards, Flushing , MI
Bread, bagels, Danish, etc. - ASB Distributors, Lincoln Park , MI (they distribute local products)
Dinners rolls - Avalon Bakery, Detroit , MI
Coffee - Becharas Brothers Coffee, Highland Park , MI
Corn chips and tortillas - Casa Hacienda, Detroit , MI
In-season produce produce - Jon Goetz Farm, Riga , MI .
Cotton candy mix, popcorn kernel, popcorn seasonings - Detroit Popcorn Co., Redford, MI
Ketel Corn - Kettle Corn of Michigan,Wyandotte , MI
Soda and assorted Faygo products, Detroit , MI
Slush Puppie 100% Juice Slushie, Northville , MI
Eggs - Grazing Fields, Charlotte, MI
Pasta - Mamma Mucci, Canton , MI
Peanut Butter - Naturally Nutty, Traverse City , MI
Old-fashioned candy - Shernni’s Candy, Washington , MI
Dried cherries - Tabone Orchards, Traverse City, MI
Assorted cheese - Traffic Jam and Snug, Detroit , MI
Flour and corn meal - Westwind Milling, Argentine, MI


If you would like to know more about the Eagle Tavern itself, please click HERE

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Maps Through Time: The Ever-changing Lay Out of Greenfield Village

From its inception over 80 years ago through today, Greenfield Village has gone through numerous layouts, which is no easy task considering that it is actual buildings - historic buildings - that are being moved. I'm sure with each change there were complaints. Well, of course, unless it was Mr. Ford's idea. No one disagreed with the Big Guy. But, even with the last major restructuring in 2003 their were disgruntled customers. My opinion is as long as it's kept historically accurate, I don't mind.

What I thought I'd do here was to show, through original six maps from six different decades, the ever-growing and ever-changing history of Greenfield Village. To see the graphics larger, please click onto the photo.


Our first map takes us back to October 29, 1929 - that very first rainy day that Henry Ford opened up his Greenfield Village to special guests. Here was Mr. Ford's original vision:



Twelve years later, in 1941, one can see just how much the Village grew:



And then, in 1957, the Village added even more structures:


In 1970, Greenfield Village looked like this:



The following two pages shows the 1983 vision:



And, finally, we have what the Village looked like in 1995:



Finally, here is a map of the most current lay out of Greenfield Village.


I find it interesting to compare all the maps to see when and how Greenfield Village changed over the years.
Which era do you like the best?


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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Table of Contents with Links

Table of Contents



Structures



Ackley Covered Bridge

Adams Family Home

Adams Family Home Mourning Presentation

A & S Machine Shop aka Armington & Sims Shop & Foundry

Bagley Avenue Workshop

Sir John Bennett Sweet Shop

Blacksmith Shop

Luther Burbank Birthplace

Luther Burbank Office

Cape Cod Windmill)

Carousel (Herschell-Spillman)

George Washington Carver Cabin

Chapman Family Home

Cider Mill (Martinsville Cider Mill))

The Clinton Inn ( The Eagle Tavern)

Cohen Millinery Shop

Cotswold Cottage

Cotswold Cottage Dovecote

Cotswold Forge

Daggett Farmhouse

The Eagle Tavern (The Clinton Inn)

Edison's Fort Meyer, Florida Laboratory

Edison Homestead

Edison Illuminating Company

Edison Menlo Park Laboratory

Edison Menlo Park Glass House

Edison's Menlo Park Machine Shop

Thomas Edison's Menlo Park Office and Library

Edison Menlo Park Woodworking Shop

Fairfield Rice Mill) (Pottery Shop)

Farris Windmill (formerly known as Cape Cod Windmill)

Firestone Farm

Firestone Farm: Yard, Barn, and Other Outbuildings

Ford Motor Company

Henry Ford Theater

Ford Home

William Ford Barn

Stephen Foster Memorial) (Sounds of America Gallery )

Robert Frost House

Giddings Family Home (Secretary Pearson House)

Glass Shop

Grimm Jewelry Store

Gunsolly Carding Mill (Plymouth Carding Mill)

Hanks Silk Mill

Hearse Shed / Deluge Fire House / (back to) Hearse Shed

Heinz House

Hermitage Slave Quarters

Dr. Howard's Office

J.R. Jones General Store

Sarah Jordan Boarding House

Lincoln Courthouse aka Logan County Courthouse

Loranger Gristmill

Martha-Mary Chapel

Mattox Family Home

William Holmes McGuffey Birthplace

William Holmes McGuffey School

McGuffey Smokehouse

Miller School

Phoenixville Post Office

Plymouth Carding Mill (Gunsolly Carding Mill)

Plympton Family Home

Pottery Shop

Printing Office and Tin Shop

Railroad Turntable

Richart Wagon Shop

Roundhouse (Detroit, Toledo, & Milwaukee)

Scotch Settlement School

Shoe Shop (Whittier Tollhouse & Shoeshop)

Slave Houses)

Smiths Creek Depot

Sounds of America Gallery (formerly known as Stephen Foster House, Stephen Foster Birthplace and Stephen Foster Memorial)

Soybean Experimental Laboratory

Spofford Saw Mill

Charles Steinmetz Cabin

Stony Creek Sawmill

Susquehanna Plantation

Swiss Chalet

Tintype Studio

Town Hall

Tripp Saw Mill

Weaving Shop

Noah Webster Home

Whittier Tollhouse & Shoeshop a.k.a Rocks Village Tollhouse and Shoe Shop

Workshop & Guild Beer Hall (originally known as Lapeer Foundry, Lapeer Machine Shop, McDonald and Sons Carriage and Repair Shop, Carriage Repair Shop)

Wright Cycle Shop

Wright Brothers Home

Wright Brothers Summer Kitchen & Outhouse



Rides and Other Things To Do



Horse-Drawn Rides

Owl Night Lunch Wagon

Steam Locomotive Train Rides

Steamboat "Suwanee"



Holidays and Special Events



Christmas at Greenfield Village: Holiday Homes Tour

Christmas at Greenfield Village: Holiday Nights

Civil War Remembrance Weekend - Takes Place Every Memorial Weekend

Hallowe'en at Greenfield Village


Miscellaneous Information



Why I Created This Blog

"History is Bunk!" - What Henry Ford Really Meant, and the Beginning of Greenfield Village

Greenfield-The Early American Village

Original Buildings in the Village for the October 1929 Grand Opening But Are There No Longer

1933 - A New Beginning for Greenfield Village

The End of One Era, and On To the Next...

Behind the Scenes at Greenfield Village

Springtime at Greenfield Village

In the Good Old Summertime at Greenfield Village

'Tis Autumn in Greenfield Village

Sarah Jordan Boarding House Catches Fire

Statue of Thomas Alva Edison

Updates


Structures No Longer Inside of Greenfield Village



West Orange Building 11

1930 - Original Building No Longer in Greenfield Village

1932 - Original Buildings No Longer in Greenfield Village

1933 - Original Buildings No Longer in Greenfield Village

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Updates

I have been continuing my research on the structures of Greenfield Village - albeit a bit more slowly than I would like - and have found some fascinating facts and stories that seemingly bring the old buildings to life.
Here are some of the postings that have been updated and I have added to since I originally wrote the information:

Dr. Howard's Office

Ackley Covered Bridge

The Clinton Inn aka The Eagle Tavern




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Friday, March 19, 2010

Horse-Drawn Rides

One of the nicest "activities" to do at Greenfield Village is to take a guided tour around the open-air museum in one of the omnibuses on hand.

Omnibuses were most often large, enclosed horse-drawn vehicles used for public transportation and for general utilities in 19th century cities.

However, Greenfield Village uses a smaller style omnibus that was sometimes referred to as an 'opera' or 'private' bus. These smaller 'buses had comfortable, roomy seating, easily accommodating four to six passengers. It made an ideal carriage for family shopping excursions during the day, and a convenient carry-all for evening when, perhaps, several members of the family went to supper or to the opera. Because of their rear door entry it was usually backed up to a curb for entry and exit.

The drivers of the omnibuses at Greenfield Village are a wonderful source of information, telling historical facts about many of the numerous structures you will see on your horse-drawn 'journey.' There are numerous stopping points throughout the Village where the visitor can exit as they like or continue their ride.
The drivers will also introduce the visitor to the horses pulling the carriage and will explain the type of horse they, are as well as the animals' age and how long they have been at the Village.

The drivers are more than willing to answer to the best of their ability any questions the visitor may have. I, myself, wondered what it took to become an omnibus driver. Well, besides knowing how to handle the horses - dominating the animals and knowing when to discipline them - I was told their test was very similar to that of an automobile driving test: they must know how to drive the horse and carriage forward (of course), but, as part of their final test the driver must be able to back up in a straight line without hitting any curbs, turn into a parking space, and trot the horses with and without a riding crop, (among other things). All in all, the drivers train a total of about 50 hours before they are tested. And only if they ace the test are they allowed to actually drive the omnibus for visitors.

From what I've been told, although these are original omnibuses, they have been reconfigured so often that they lost whatever historical value they may have held.
I plan to return one day soon to delve deeper and hopefully learn more about the individual omnibuses being used in the Village

I put the photos in groups by omnibus - - - enjoy...



Note the rear entry and exit door in the picture above.
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I did find a little about this 'bus: it was built between 1890 to 1905 by Brewster and Company in New York. The body is suspended on two elliptical springs in the front and in the rear. There is a whip socket on the right side of the driver's seat, and the brakes are operated by a hand lever, also from the driver's seat.


I took this photo as we rode past the Sarah Jordan Boarding House from the inside of the above omnibus.

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From what I have been told, the above 'bus was originally a hearse. Sure does look like one!


I must say, my favorite part of my ride when on one of the Village omnibuses is when we cross over the Ackley Covered Bridge. As the 'bus enters the darkness of the bridge, the clatter made by the wheels and the clip-clopping of the horse's hooves upon the uneven boards reverberates off the wood walls of the ancient structure, and one can just imagine exactly what it was like - in sight and sound - back in the 19th century when both bridge and carriage were common. It literally sends one back to another time.


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Saturday, January 16, 2010

Wintertime at Greenfield Village

~ We come from the land of the ice and snow...


I would enjoy winter more if my favorite historical out-door museum, Greenfield Village, would remain open during January, February, and March.
You see, by the 1st of December they close up the Village for daytime visitors and only remain open for their special Christmas Holiday Nights evenings.
Though the adjacent indoor Henry Ford Museum stays open year 'round, Greenfield Village closes its gates after Christmas.
I never quite understood this. I can maybe see not remaining open during weekdays, but how cool would it be to visit on a Saturday or Sunday and be able to take a horse-drawn sleigh ride? Or, during the late winter (and early spring) allowing folks to watch and possibly partake in maple sugaring?
They wouldn't need to open all of their houses as they normally do; they instead could have the two 'main' houses - the 1880's Firestone Farm and 1760's Daggett Farm, which are located on opposite ends of the Village - the only two structures open to the public so the visitors could see wintertime activities in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Behind their Porches and Parlors area (where they also show home life of the past) there is a sort of steep grassy incline that would be perfect for sledding - how many young kids today (besides those who have traditional parents like us) have ever been sledding?
Not many, I'm willing to bet.
And one of the best things is that the visitors would be able to enjoy the historic scenic beauty of wintertime that only Greenfield Village has to offer.
It's activities like this that can make the harsh cold winter that much more bearable. 
And it's history to boot! 
But, unfortunately, this not to be.
At least for now. 
One never knows the changes that lie ahead...right?
So, in the meantime, since visitors are not allowed inside Greenfield Village during the off season, I thought I would try something different to get a few winter shots: I walked along the perimeter brick wall, which is roughly six feet high, and held my camera above it. The great thing about my camera is that the angle of the LCD screen can be adjusted up to 90 degrees face up or face down, allowing me to view my subject clearly while I hold the camera at arms length above my head, in this case enabling me to capture the scenery waiting on the other side of the wall.
Understand, it's only a very small portion of this magnificent open-air museum that I was able to capture on film...er...on my memory card.
So, since it is still winter (even though it's March), I'd like to present the photos I was able to get and present them to you here:

The mid-1600's Farris Windmill relocated to Greenfield Village from Cape Cod is on the left and the 1750's Connecticut Saltbox house, originally built and owned by Samuel Daggett and his wife, Anna, is on the right. The Daggett House is one of my favorite historical houses...period. The presenters here do an amazing job replicating the daily life of a mid-18th century farm family.

The saltbox was a very popular style of architecture in colonial Connecticut. This form gets its name from the similarity in shape to the small chests used for storing salt at that time. The most distinctive feature is the asymmetrical gable roof, which has a short roof plane in the front and a long roof plane in the rear, extending over a lean-to. English settlers created the saltbox form by adapting a medieval house form to meet the different needs and climate of North America. The design was perfect for the harsh New England climate.

Besides building houses, Samuel Daggett worked the family farm and grew many different crops and raised several types of animals on his farm, for his family's use or to sell or trade for other things the family needed. From his account book, we know that Samuel Daggett grew wheat, corn, barley, oats and tobacco; made cider from the apples in his orchard; and raised cattle, sheep, pigs and chickens. One would think that would be enough to keep the man plenty busy, but, in order to provide for his family, Daggett also had additional sources of income, including making furniture; he made chairs, spinning wheels and even coffins.
Surprisingly, we find that he pulled aching teeth for his neighbors, a skill he learned from his father.

For this picture I was able to include the Plympton house, built in the early part of the 18th century, to complete our colonial winter scene.

The brick over the large fireplace of the Plympton house dates to 1640, to the original home of Thomas Plympton. Plympton was a founding father of the Puritan settlement of Sudbury, Massachusetts, and lived there with his wife, Abigail, and their seven children. This, after he came to North America from England as an indentured servant.

The original house of Thomas Plympton burned down in the early 1700's, years after his death, and his descendants who were living there at the time rebuilt the home around the original chimney.

Henry and Elizabeth Carroll and their family built this house, known as the Susquehanna Plantation, in the mid-1830's, where it sat upon 700 acres, and enjoyed a prosperous life, including hosting extravagant parties. They had five children.
Their 75 slaves, however, did not enjoy the same good life; they slept in 13 small, wood shacks with dirt floors and were made to work brutal hours in the fields, especially during harvest time.
The Carroll family was one of the wealthiest in St. Mary's County - the slaves alone, according to the 1860 census, were valued at $49,000. Among the slaves were skilled craftsmen, including blacksmiths, carpenters, coopers, shoemakers, and seamstresses.
  During the Civil War Remembrance Weekend on Memorial Day this house is used prominently in scenarios. Ahhh...hard to imagine reenactor tents set up now, though, isn't it?


Across the street from Susquehanna is the Cotswold Cottage collection.

Henry Ford desired to show America's ancestral European life and sent his agent, Herbert Morton, to find a typical Cotswold stone house for Greenfield Village. Morton eventually located this circa 1620 Rose Cottage in Chedworth, Gloucestershire, England, and found that it was for sale.
The workers dismantled the structures stone by stone - numbering each one individually - and packed them in gravel sacks. Soon the Cotswold collection was on its way to Dearborn, Michigan (via boat and then train), as were a number of the English builders, eager to help with the reconstruction.

The beautifully scenic Ackley Covered Bridge, built in 1832 in Pennsylvania, is photogenic whether summer or winter. In the old days, instead of plowing the snow out of the way as we do in our modern times, workers would use snow rollers to pack it down. They rolled the roads, covering the bare spots so that sleighs could get through, and if they came to a covered bridge or an area cleared of the white stuff, they would shovel a layer of snow onto the bridge floor or the bare area so that the sleigh runners wouldn't stick.



The Sarah Jordan Boarding House, built in 1870, originally stood near the laboratory where Thomas Edison and his men toiled in Menlo Park, New Jersey. Widowed in 1877, "Aunt Sally," as Sarah was known, lived in Newark, and was sent for in 1878 by her distant relative, Thomas Edison, to run a place for his workers to eat and sleep. With little employment opportunities for women, Mrs. Jordan accepted the offer and opened the home as a boarding house that same year.
Several of Edison's single employees lived here and would sleep two to three to a bed in the six rooms on the second floor. In fact, at the height of the laboratory's activities in 1880, sixteen boarders called this structure 'home.'


As you may or may not know, the former home of newspaper columnist George Matthew Adams, since being brought to the Village back in 1938, has been presented to show everyday life from around the time of Adams' birth in the 1870's.
However, it is going through a major change: beginning possibly before the Village closes for the 2014 season, the Adams House will become the "Saline Baptist Parsonage," showing the structure as it was during the 1840's when it actually was a Baptist Parsonage.
I am personally very excited for this change to happen, for the 1840's is one era that I felt was under-represented inside Greenfield Village.


I took this photo of the Adams House during Christmas using a slow shutter speed, so the shadows you see are some of the people strolling by that the shutter could not capture.

Or are they...?


It was in this simple two-story clapboard farmhouse (the white house in the distance) built in 1861 on the dividing line of Springwells and Dearborn Townships in Michigan, that Henry Ford, the first of William and Mary's six children, was born on July 30, 1863.


This is a photo of a part of the 'town' area of Greenfield Village. From the left is a replica (albeit much smaller) version of the first Ford Factory from 1903.

Next we have the Cohen Millinery Shop, originally located at 444 Baker Street in Detroit. It represents the new wave of specialized stores in the larger cities in the late 19th century. It was here that Mrs. Elizabeth Cohen made her living decorating women's hats from 1892 to 1903, catering to mainly the middle class genre.

To the right of the millinery we have the Heinz House. It was in the early 1860's in this Sharpsburg, Pennsylvania brick house, built in 1854, that Henry John (H.J.) Heinz (b. 1844), the son of a German immigrant brickmaker, produced the first of his more than "57 Varieties" of ketchup. Using horseradish grown in the family's truck garden along the Allegheny River, the boy grated and bottled it in vinegar in his mother's new basement kitchen. Yep, Heinz 57 was born right here in this building!

The following photographs are not mine. They were taken by a few of the presenters who work for the Village. They all know my love for this place and have very kindly shared their winter pictures with me, and I appreciate them allowing me to use these wonderful photos in my blog post!


The Firestone Farm was originally built by Peter Firestone in 1828 in Columbiana, Ohio (just a few miles from the Pennsylvania border), and was "updated" in 1882. It was brought to Greenfield Village in 1983 and is now a gem among gems inside the Village.


Among the family members living there in the latter half of the 19th century was young Harvey Firestone, the grandson of Peter, who would later gain fame and fortune in the tire industry and became a close friend of Henry Ford.


The Firestone Farm, as it stands now in Greenfield Village, is a living history re-creation of life on a farm of the 1880's in Eastern Ohio, and has been restored to look as it did in 1882, when Harvey's parents remodeled the house to give it a more modern look. The wallpaper and furnishings throughout the house show what was considered stylish in the later Victorian era.


During the 19th and into the 20th century, the Firestones raised a large flock of sheep, with wool being their 'cash crop,' but they also harvested oats, hay, corn, and wheat.

I hope you enjoyed this rarely seen excursion into Greenfield Village during the winter. We can hope that one day visitors will, once again, be able to enjoy this wonderful place during each season of the year.




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